What is the Premise of Carb Cycling?
One of the ways that carb cycling works is up regulating the fat burning hormone, leptin. When you take in a huge influx of calories in one sitting, it creates an “emergency” boost to your metabolism. Your body does not realize that this increase in calories is only for a short term, so it revs up your metabolic furnace in order to prepare for what it thinks will be a continued high calorie diet. Little does you body know that you will be back on your health eating plan shortly after your planned carb cycling.
Carb cycling works very well when planned and carried out successfully. The draw back is that in order to get the most out of carb cycling you must be spot on with your macronutrient intake and food logging is non-negotiable. Also, in order to manipulate carb meal sizes most effectively you need to do some type of body fat tracking so you can make any needed adjustment. This is best accomplished going to a skilled Biosignature skin fold caliper practitioner because body fat scales are solely based upon hydration status, which can fluctuate dramatically.
Our bodies are nothing short of amazing. In order to prevent the law of diminishing returns we must utilize a planned progression (periodization) to prevent the general adaptation syndrome from developing. This holds true with not only exercise and is often overlooked in regards to nutrition. The body adapts to certain diets and eating behaviors. Alternating periods of carb cycling from the usual dietary intervention is an effective technique to enhance results when returning to the original nutrition plan.
One of my favorite carb cycling methods:
4 – 2 – 0 Carb Cycling Method
Requirements & Instructions:
- Low carb will reach a point of no return. Adaptation is inevitable not only to the training plan, but also to a nutrition plan.
- Protein and fat stay constant from day to day.
- You must chart macros with my fitness pal. Best results are seen decreasing 400 calories between days, which is achieved from dropping the number of carb meals from the previous day. Starchy carbs start at 1/2 cup per meal on designated days.
- Continue to slowly increase serving size of carb meals every 1-2 weeks until body fat reduction fails. At this point you can try another carb cycling method, or return back to low carb. We want to try and eat more to lose body fat, which will produce better results when returning to low carb. Always when results hit a plateau, its time to try another method.
- Best results occur if monitored closely by an experienced skin fold caliper user. Preferably a Biosignature certified practitioner with more than 3 years of experience.
- This method works well for carb tolerant clients with a healthy blood sugar score. Looking for healthy, progressive and sustainable fat loss.
What are the best carbs to eat?
Non carbohydrate meals stick to NON-STARCHY CARBS such as:
- Peppers (any color)
- Bamboo shoots
- Broccoli or cauliflower
- Brussel sprouts
- Or any other GREEN vegetable
- NO GREEN BEANS. They are a legume
Carbohydrate meals strive to consume STARCHY CARBS such as:
- Sweet potato
- Brown rice
-Monitor body after carb consumption. Water retention, gassy & bloated, mental fog, and impaired digestion are among a few indicators of potential carb intolerances. We want to choose a carb that makes you very hungry 2-3 hours after consumption.
4-2-0 Carb Cycling Example:
Day 1: 4 meals with starchy carbs
Day 2: 2 meal with starchy carbs
Day 3: 0 meals with starchy carbs
Day 4: Repeat